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Thread: Pepper/salt mill finish choices

  1. #1

    Pepper/salt mill finish choices

    I'm making 8 pepper and salt mills for friends and family. Mix of crush grind and traditional mechanisms (my stock).
    Claro walnut, Sipo, and American hardwoods. In the past I've finished mills off the lathe with WOP. Pain in the butt, takes too long, etc..

    So, looking for other durable choices. I've got General finishes waterborne stuff, deft clear wood finish, Drs pens plus, Walnut oil, various shellac based turning finishes and the like. I'm good with CA for pens and slight larger items, but question my ability to use CA for something in 2 inch did range.

    I used the pens plus on Claro Walnut sample and it looks fantastic, but I have no experience the durability.
    Experienced help would be most appreciated.
    demps

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Coshocton Ohio
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    164
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Dempsey View Post
    I'm making 8 pepper and salt mills for friends and family. Mix of crush grind and traditional mechanisms (my stock).
    Claro walnut, Sipo, and American hardwoods. In the past I've finished mills off the lathe with WOP. Pain in the butt, takes too long, etc..

    So, looking for other durable choices. I've got General finishes waterborne stuff, deft clear wood finish, Drs pens plus, Walnut oil, various shellac based turning finishes and the like. I'm good with CA for pens and slight larger items, but question my ability to use CA for something in 2 inch did range.

    I used the pens plus on Claro Walnut sample and it looks fantastic, but I have no experience the durability.
    Experienced help would be most appreciated.
    demps
    Bill I understand your "Pain in the butt, takes to long, etc." feeling, but for a long lasting good looking satin finish,I have to say a little more time finishing pays dividends.
    I have had great success using Captain Eddies shine juice. 1/3rd boiled linseed oil, 1/3rd denatured alcohol, 1/3rd shellac. (I apply at least 20 coats with a shop towel.)
    Takes quite a bit of time but the results are worth it to me. Especially the durability. Have used a pepper grinder daily for the past 5 years and it still looks like new.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sykesville, maryland
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    721
    I haven't found anything much easier than WOP. I haven't yet worked with the epoxy coatings. Sure to get a shiny finish, but doubt they'd be much easier than WOP. If you want satin, it only takes a few minutes to achieve that with friction polishes. I also like Minwax tung oil finish. But it'll take 4 coats to get a sheen. I'd like to know if you find something easier and as shiny and durable as WOP.

  4. #4
    Salt/pepper mills frequently get banged up from use in the kitchen. Film finishes - lacquer, wipe on poly and similar - show nicks and bruises and are difficult to repair. I use oil based finishes - walnut oil, Liberon finishing oil, Waterlox and similar. Easy application and easy repair of blemishes from use. - John
    Last edited by John King; 07-30-2021 at 3:24 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    sykesville, maryland
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    Quote Originally Posted by John King View Post
    Salt/pepper mills frequently get banged up from use in the kitchen. Film finishes - lacquer, wipe on poly and similar - show nicks and bruises and are difficult to repair. I use oil based finishes - walnut oil, Liberon finishing oil, Waterlox and similar. Easy application and easy repair of blemishes from use. - John
    Friction polishes and Minwax Tung Oil finish can also be reapplied at anytime without stripping off the old finish. And both are "food safe".

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by tom lucas View Post
    Friction polishes and Minwax Tung Oil finish can also be reapplied at anytime without stripping off the old finish. And both are "food safe".
    Quick question, how do you reapply a friction polish on a finished piece? Doesn’t it need to be on the lathe to get the friction required to cure the finish? If there’s a way to do it off the lathe that would be really useful to know.
    thanks, Tom

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    sykesville, maryland
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    721
    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Wilson80 View Post
    Quick question, how do you reapply a friction polish on a finished piece? Doesn’t it need to be on the lathe to get the friction required to cure the finish? If there’s a way to do it off the lathe that would be really useful to know.
    thanks, Tom
    Usually done on the lathe. Finish one side before turning over to cut the other, and then finish that before you take off the lathe. Might have to flip again if you use a tenon on the bottom and you want a shiny bottom. I guess it could be done off the lathe with a power polisher. Don't know why you wouldn't just do it on the lathe though.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by tom lucas View Post
    Usually done on the lathe. Finish one side before turning over to cut the other, and then finish that before you take off the lathe. Might have to flip again if you use a tenon on the bottom and you want a shiny bottom. I guess it could be done off the lathe with a power polisher. Don't know why you wouldn't just do it on the lathe though.
    I think I just misunderstood you. I thought you were talking about refinishing with friction polish sometime after the piece was initially finished. I have used friction polish on the lathe at the time of initial finishing multiple times but don't know how it could be done at a later time on the lathe to reapply the finish, short of using some sort of jam chuck, which may not work depending on the piece.
    Thanks, Tom

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